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§ 99.

The Christian church.

The collective body (1) of those who have received (2) the Christian doctrines, together with all those who are to be qualified (3) for the reception of them, is termed "the church of God and of Christ” (4); that is (5) the people or family of God and of Christ (6); who worship Christ, and in so doing, God as their Lord (7), and who are supported and governed by his particular providence.


1. The church not sectional.-1 Cor. 1: 2. Paul embraces in one the christian congregation in Corinth, and all chris

tians in all places, εν παντι τοπω.

John 10:16, μια ποιμνη one flock. 1 Cor. 12: 12 &c, TAVTES ELS ÉV Goua eßantionμεν ειτε Ιουδαιοι, ειτε Ελληνες we are all baptized into one body, whether we are Jews or Greeks. Rom. 12: 4, oi noldo, ¿v σωμα εσμεν εν Χριστώ we many are one body in Christ. Εph. 4: 446.

II. Subject continued.-In other words, all those who are called (untoi 1 Cor. 1: 2), in the sense of this phrase which is given in $ 71. Ill. 2; or all those who in the time of the apostles, could not be reckoned among the Jews or Gentiles, who belonged not to the Iουδαιοις και Ελλησι (1 Cor. 10: 32), are sometimes called “the church."

III. Membership of children.—Comp. $ 112. Little children were included also among the ancient people of God. Gen. 17: 10—14. Children eight days old, were to receive circumcision, which was the mark of those who belonged to the people of God, or which was a sign of the covenant between God and

his people.


The name CHURCH.—The appellation & xxa nola (or church), without any adjunct, occurs 1 Cor. 12 : 28. Eph. 1: 22. 3: 10. Phil. 3:6. The phrase Exxanoia frov or tou trov church of God, is applied to the whole christian church (1 Cor. 10:32. 15:9), and to a single christian church. 1 Cor. 11:22, 16. 1: 2. 1 Tim. 3: 5. The church is termed " church

[1 Various definitions have been given of the church visible and invisible. The following, which differs from any that the writer remembers to have seen, may perhaps have some claim to clearness and precision.

I. The visible church of Christ is the collective body of those who profess the christian religion; consisting of all those who have been admitted to membership by baptism, and have not been deprived of it by excommunication.

II. The true or invisible church is the collective body of all those, of every religious denomination in the world, who are in a state of grace. S.] VOL. II.


of Christ,” xxxinola Xolotov, in Matth. 16: 18, I will build my church. Eph. 3: 21, the church in (or of) Jesus Christ. 5: 23. She is called “the church of God and Christ,” or, which is the same thing, “ in God the Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ." 1 Thess. 1: 1, and 2 Thess. 1: 1. Of the same import is the phrase, “ the churches of God which are in Christ Jesus," I Thess. 2: 14, where ev, which corresponds to the Hebrew expresses the dative, ecclesia Christo sacra, i. e. ecclesia Christi. Thus, in Jude v. 1, we read the christians, xantot, are dedicated to God the Father,” εν θεω πατρι ηγιασμενοι, and are preserved for Jesus Christ, i.e. they remain christians (belonging to Christ). In short, christians are here termed“ a people consecrated to God the Father, and Jesus Christ.” Thus the words, (John 17:11,) rnonoov avtous EV TỢ ovouatı gou may be translated thus, “ Preserve them, O Father, (as thine) for thyself.”l

On the philosophic view of a Church or of an Ethical Polity; that is, of a public union of men for moral purposes under a moral Lawgiver and Judge, see Kant's Religionslehre, 1st ed. p. 123–134; Stäudlin “Ueber den Begrif der Kirche, und Kirchengeschichte,” in the Götting Theol. Bibl. Vol. 1, p.600— 653; and Stapffer “De natura, conditore, et incrementis reipublicae ethicae," Bern, 1797, Dissert. 1.

On the insufficiency of mere natural religion, for the foundation of a church and social religious worship, see Stäudlin “On the public worship of natural religion ;" “ Beiträge” to the philosophy and history of religion and morality, Vol. 1, No. VIII.

V. Subject continued.—The ancient people of God also bore the name “church of God,” xxxindia [972] xuplov. Deut. 23: 2 &c, 8. Eckermann remarks, that this expression has a peculiar force in Deut. ch. 23, because the context relates to

1 Dissert. I. in Libros N. T. histor. p. 89. 2 Theol, Beitr. Vol. 2. Pt. I.

p. 57.

persons who are to be excluded from connexion with the people of God; and that Paul may also have used the expression (1 Cor. 1: 2) Exxanoia Geov “church of God," with an emphatic reference to the incestuous person (ch. 5), whom he pronounces unworthy to be a member of the church. From this ancient people of God, the new people originated. Hence the ancient name of the Israelites descended to Christians or the new people of God, which consists of the better and more genuine portion of the Israelites (Rom. 9: 6, OU TAVTES OL EE IOραηλ, ούτοι Ισραηλ. 2: 28, 29, ο εν τω κρυπτο Ιουδαιος-περιtoun napdias), and an addition of Gentiles.2 Luke 1:32 &c, he shall reign over the house of Jacob. Acts 15: 16, I will rebuild the tabernacle of David. Phil. 3:3, we are the circumcision. Rom. 4:11, 12, 16, the seed of Abraham which is of faith. Gal. 3: 29, If ye are Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed. All these appellations are figurative, and signify the new people of God, which was prefigured by the old. Dissert. de notione regni coelestis, VI.

VI. The church is called the people of God and of Christ. Acts 15: 14, a people for the name of God. v. 17, all the gentiles over whom the name of God is called. 1 Pet. 2: 9 &c, ye are a holy nation, a people of God. 1: 14, as obedient children. v. 15, 16, be ye holy as he who hath called you is holy. Tit. 2: 14, that he might purify [consecrate] unto himself a peculiar people. 1 Tim. 3: 15, in the house of God, which is the church of the living God. Heb. 3: 2, 3, 6, we are the house of Christ. The ancient people of God, from which the new is derived, and to which there is an evident reference in Acts 15 : 16. 1 Pet. 1: 16. Heb. 2: 5, also receives this name. Compare 2

1 Luke 24: 47, κηρυχθηναι-–εις παντα τα εθνη, αρξαμενον απο * lepovoadnu should be proclaimed among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. Rom. 11: 12—24, the gentile converts are called ayoledacos κεντρισθεις εις καλλιελαιον. 15: 27. Acts 15: 16.

2 Εph. 2: 19, ουκετι ξενοι και παροικοι, αλλα συμπολιται των aylov xotɛ ye are no longer guests and foreigners, but fellow citizens of

she saints.

. 7: , called after my name, with Acts 15:17, 14; and Ex. 19:6,

my people which is עַמִּי אֲשֶׁר נִקְרָא-שְׁמִי עֲלֵיהֶם ,7



-a kingdom of priests and a holy peo מַמְלֶכֶת כֹּהֲנִים וְגוֹי קָדוֹשׁ

ple, with 1 Pet. 2:9. The expression Oixos xuplov the house of the Lord, which is applied to the new people of God (1 Tim. 3:15. Heb. 3: 2-4, 6), is, according to the Alexandrian Codex, used by the LXX (Deut. 23: 1, where the Hebrew is 387

777 of the children of Israel; whereas the Vatican Ms. has εκκλησιαν κυριου. . “ House of God” or “ people of God” onXOS TEOUAaos frou (comp. Heb. 3:6–8 with 4:7–9) are synonymous, and both signify “the family of God. Of similar import are the following expressions of the Old Testament.-- 1. Ex. 4: 23,972 Israel, my (God's) firstborn son.—2. Hos. 11:1, my son.--3. Is.1: 2-4, 02 children of God. Deut. 32:5, 6, he is thy Father.--4. Numb. 12: 7, na house. In v. 14, God calls himself, Father of the house to which Moses and his sister Miriam belonged._-5. The term agioi holy, when it is used without adjunct (as 2 Cor. 1:1 and 1 Cor. 14: 33. 6: 1. v. 4, —Exxnoia), signifies nothing else than a people consecrated to God and Christ, or a people of God and Christ, dylaquevou ev Xoloro Inoov 1 Cor. 1: 2. Comp. Illust. 4 sup. Thus, the ancient people of God is called " a people consecrated to God,” (1717vinp-by Ex. 19: 6. Deut. 7: 6. and 14: 2), in opposition to idolatrous nations.2

VII. The true church worship Christ.-Eph. 5: 24, the church is subject to Christ. Col. 2: 19. 1 Cor. 1: 2. Comp. § 42. John 10:3—5, 14, I am known of mine. v. 27, my sheep hear my voice--and follow me. It must indeed be ad

1 Vide Storr's Comm. on Heb. 3: 2, note l. 2 Vide Dissert, I. in Ep. ad Col. not. 42.

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